North Korea

We do not condone, support or encourage the regime of North Korea in any manner whatsoever. We are independent travellers and these photos are from a perspective of us with no political, ethical motives or social incentives.

North Korea (DPRK) is one of the most isolated and closed off country in the world. Yet we were lucky enough to get in and spend a week in Pyongyang as well as traveling across the Chinese border by train.

Generally, visitors to North Korea must either be tourists on a guided package tour, guests of the government, or to have received an invitation by “a citizen of some standing” or a volunteer organization. We chose not to travel with a tour group and had the services of a local guide so we were able to sightsee and travel on public transport.

Travelers are subject to guidelines and have to stand by them if you intend to travel there. You have to pay respect to local traditions, customs and local laws, as you will do in any other countries you travel to. Despite what can be read on the web, photographs are permitted with authorisation, electronic devises are allowed, blue jeans are not forbidden (at the expectation of when visiting some memorial monuments), and you can talk to the locals but the language barrier can stifle the conversation. I have personally never felt so safe in a country.

1. Sacred status and photos of the Great Leaders are scattered all over the capital.
2. The subway in Pyongyang. There are only few stations that are open to foreign visitors.
3. The delicious North Korean cuisine with its national dish, kimchi, a pickled and fermented cabbage dish and Korean barbecue. We did not have the chance to take picture of the lively market place, so much choice and flavors there.
4. Sunset in Pyongyang.
5. Rungrado 1st of May Stadium, the largest stadium in the world with a total capacity of approximately 114,000 seats
6. Pyongyang has beautiful parks. Don’t be surprised if you are followed there. They just watch over you from the distance.
7. The primary architectural style in Pyongyang in particular is the old Soviet style uniform cement gray with a modern twist to it. Many skyscrapers on the horizon and colourful houses.
8. Ryugyong hotel in the centre of Pyongyang is meant to be the largest hotel in the world and is uninhabited.
9. An average North Korean street.
10. A village in North Korea’s countryside.
11. North Korea’s sparse agricultural resources with a relatively short cropping season.
12. Border crossing with China after a night journey by train.

Visiting North Korea was an experience like no other. We will undoubtedly keep a good memory of the people we met during this trip and share time with. It is one thing to get to know a country through the medias and it is a totally different feeling to discover it by yourself and make your own opinion. What stop you travelling to unknown places ?

See things with your own eyes.

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